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Dining with the chef / Archives

Sep. 9, Mon.

Authentic Japanese Cooking

Marinating Part1: Fried Vegetables Marinated in Dashi

Today's theme is "marinating". We are learning how marinating elevates the flavor of fried vegetables by infusing them in a dashi stock and soy sauce mixture. For one variation on this dish, our chef is making a noodle dish, using marinated and fried vegetables.

Fried Vegetables Marinated in Dashi

[Ingredients] *Serves 2

1/2 burdock root (80g)
2 Japanese eggplants (180g in total)
1/8 kabocha squash (150g)
1/3 carrot (100g)
8 green beans
5 pieces of okra

400ml dashi
2 tbsp sugar
50ml mirin
3 tbsp soy sauce
3 tbsp usukuchi soy sauce
15g bonito flakes
1 dried red chili pepper
Vegetable oil for deep-frying
1. Cut the burdock into oblique pieces. Remove the stem and hull from the eggplant and cut into 6 wedges. Soak both of them in water to remove any bitterness and cut the carrot into oblique pieces. Cut the kabocha squash. Remove the strings from the green beans. Peel the outer part of the okra stems and cut each in half, lengthwise.

2. Place the dashi, sugar, mirin, soy sauce and usukuchi soy sauce in a saucepan and turn on the heat. Add a handful of bonito flakes. Turn off the heat, just before it reaches to a boil. Strain and add some chili pepper.

3. Fry the burdock pieces for 2 minutes. Fry the carrot pieces for 1.5 minutes. Fry the kabocha slices for 2.5 minutes. Fry the green beans for 30 seconds. Fry the okra halves, for 1 minute. Finally, fry the eggplant wedges for 1.5 minutes.

4. Soak them in the marinade while still hot. Cover with plastic wrap, and chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.

<For Arranging>
Somen Noodles with Fried Vegetables Marinated in Dashi

[Ingredients] *Serves 2

250g Fried Vegetables Marinated in Dashi
150g dried somen noodles
5 shiso leaves
2 myoga ginger buds

100ml marinade from Fried Vegetables Marinated in Dashi
2 tbsp mayonnaise
1. Cook the noodles in boiling water for 1.5 minutes, adding cold water few times. Then drain and rub the noodles in running cold water, to increase elasticity.

2. Cut Shiso leaves and myoga ginger buds into thin strips.

3. Combine mayonnaise with the marinade from the fried vegetables. Gather the somen noodles into bite size bunches, arrange them on a plate, top with the marinated vegetables and Japanese herbs, and pour the sauce on top.